Back to Bed: What you can do on those restless nights to get back to sleep Posted on May 15, 2017 by , 0 comments
Sleep patterns, duration, quality and habits change throughout our lifetimes. While it may have been easy to fall asleep and stay asleep in our twenties, it may become a bit of a daunting task in our forties. For many, it’s the inability to go back to sleep during the night that is the most challenging. We have put together our favorite ways to handle restless sleep at any age. Here’s how:
Address and change what wakes you
For some people, their rooms might not be dark enough, cool enough, or quiet enough for a full night of sleep. If you find yourself waking in the middle of the night, try changing your sleep environment. If you can’t seem to put your finger on it, try earplugs. It may be that your partner’s snoring, passing cars, or a just sounds of the house settling is keeping you up.
- Try a relaxation technique If your sleep environment is ideal, you’ve already tried earplugs, and you still can’t get yourself back to sleep, try doing some deep breathing or relaxation. Simply focus on your breathing, and count evenly as you breathe in and out. You can also try color breathing, where you envision your inhale as a cool, calming, blue air and your exhale as a cleansing gray air.
- Get up If the environment is fine, the earplugs didn’t work, and the breathing or relaxation technique was a bust, get up and find a calming activity to do for twenty minutes. You can read a book, step outside for some fresh air, or have a warm cup of tea or milk. A warm bath may also do the trick by relaxing you as well as regulating your body temperature.
Think about what you do before bed
If none of these steps are helping, think about what you are doing in the hours before bedtime. Too much water or alcohol can cause you to wake in the night. Exposure to light from phones, tablets and screens prior to bedtime can impact your sleep cycle. Stress and anxiety may also impact your ability to stay asleep, as can an imbalanced diet or not enough exercise.
If you have tried it all and still not found relief, consider speaking with your healthcare provider. They may have further insight into what you can do to fall and stay asleep.
What do you do to help get yourself back to sleep? Tell us in the comments below!